This is a guest post by Silver Shell. Enjoy!
Howdy, Poptropicans! Today’s topic is all about Balloon Boy, and how he became a floating Pop icon. Let’s get right into it!
Back in Poptropica’s earlier days, there was a teenage player. His screen name was Green Flyer. He happened to be a glitcher, and decided to see what happened if he took the balloon from Bobo’s Clown Store up and over to the aircraft graveyard of Early Poptropica Island to see what the purple giant’s face looked like, since all anyone knew was his feet.
So Green Flyer took a balloon — a nice green one — and got it from Counterfeit Island to Early Poptropica. He jumped as high as he could, going much higher than the game intended players to go. Now, this glitch had never been tried before, so as anyone can imagine, there were going to be problems. The creators had programmed it to only show the giant’s feet, and this was defying their programming. The glitcher was trying to do something that couldn’t be glitched.
Unsurprisingly, the “clever” glitch failed. Green Flyer’s screen froze and wouldn’t come back on. He informed the creators about it, but there wasn’t much that could be done. The glitch, thought to be helpful, turned out to be a huge bug.
All the creators could do to make sure that Green Flyer would be able to play Poptropica again would be to delete his account. Not having much of a choice, he agreed and had to start from scratch.
Later on, the creators began to think, “Hey, that was a pretty interesting situation there. What a great chance to make a new Pop icon!!” So the creators built Green Flyer’s character into Counterfeit (which at the time was not yet out to everyone) along with a mother character. In the quest, they had the player help him by giving him a green balloon, which he’d take and fly away with. This character also never came down (yet!), just like how in real life, the bug couldn’t be fixed and the teenager couldn’t get his avatar back online.
The Pop community found this NPC cool as well, and used him often when trying to represent Pop. As hoped, he became an important and popular symbol of the game, competing with Dr Hare. However, after a while, people forgot about the name Green Flyer and started referring to him as Balloon Boy.
And that, my Pop friends, is one story of how our beloved Balloon Boy came to be. Thanks for reading as always!
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